Cotton Farming: scientific technique for boosting yield

Complete information on Cotton farming

Cotton Farming

Expectation from cotton farming

Expected Harvest

10-12 Quintal per acre

Expected Duration

130-180 days after sowing

Expected Expenditure (Rs)


Expected Income (Rs)


Favorable climate for cotton cultivation

Ideal climate for farming cotton

  • Cotton can be grown in places wherever, at least 180-200 frost free days are available.
  • High humidity leads to rotting of cotton.
  • Cotton is discoloured due to high light intensity.

Temperature required for cotton

  • Optimum temperature for germination is 20-30°C. 
  • Germination will be delayed if the temperature is less than 18°C.
  • Under adequate soil moisture, cotton can withstand high temperatures of 43-45°C for short periods.

Cotton crop water requirements

  • Originally it is Kharif crop, but during the vegetative phase, moderate rainfall is good whereas in later stages heavy rains will affect the quality of cotton.
  • Water requirement – Equivalent to 650-750 mm of rainfall

Get scientific information about Cotton Farming directly on your smartphone. Download the BharatAgri app now.


Ideal soil for growing cotton

Soil type

  • Black cotton soil with good water holding capacity
  • Cotton is sensitive to excessive moisture and water logging.

Soil pH

  • Required range – 7.0 – 8.5
  • If pH is <6.0 add Lime
  • If pH is >8.5 add Gypsum
Seed Rate
4 kg/acre
800 gram/acre

Seed treatment in cotton crop

Treat the cotton seeds with 

  • Imidacloprid – 4 ml

Instructions – Mix the above quantity in two liter of water for one kg of seeds. Deep the seeds in solution for 10 min & then shade dry for 15 min.

  • Carbendazim 2 gram

Instructions – treated seeds again treat with the thiram 2 gram for 1 kg of seeds. Apply it on seed by rubbing it on seed surface.

Land preparation for cotton farming

Land Preparation

  1. Ploughing method – Plough the land 1 or 2 times based on soil type.
  2. Mix the following in field, and keep it in open air for 10 days for proper decomposition – 
    1. FYM – 2 tons
    2. Composting Bacteria – 3kg
  3. Spread the above mixture over soil and run rotavator to the entire field making the soil as a fine tilth.

Bed Preparation

  1. Bed preparation- Prepare ridges and furrows 90 cm apart with the help of tractor.
BharatAgri app gives you weather-based dynamic information about cotton farming. Download now.

Spacing and plant population in cotton farming

Row to Row
2.9 ft
Plant to Plant
1.9 ft
Plant Population
Row to Row
2.9 ft
Plant to Plant
2.9 ft
Plant Population

Cotton farming: cotton sowing

  • Cotton sowing time: April to second week of May
  • Put 2 seeds per hill on ridges at 2-3 inch deep and then cover with soil

Cotton fertilizer management

  • For Varieties- 20:10:10 kg NPK per acre
  • At sowing apply-

    Urea- 22 kg

    Single Super Phosphate- 62 kg 

    Muriate of Potash- 17 kg

  • 45 Days after sowing- 11 Kg kg Urea
  • 45 Days after sowing– 11 kg Urea
  • For Hybrids- 32:16:16 kg NPK per acre.
  • At sowing apply-

    Urea- 35 kg 

    Single Super Phosphate- 99 kg 

    Muriate of Potash- 27 kg

  • 30 Days after sowing- 17 kg Urea
  • 45 Days after sowing- 17 kg Urea

Irrigation in cotton farming

  • Flood – At 10 to 12 days interval (based on rainfall)
  • Flowering, boll formation and boll development stage are critical stages for irrigation at which irrigation must be applied regularly (Based on rainfall)
Have a high crop yield from your cotton farm by implementing a complete day-by-day schedule on your farm. Get the schedule only on BharatAgri app. Download now.

Cotton farming and intercultural operations

  1. Gap filling- After 10 days put seeds in gaps where germination is not observed.


  • Raise seedlings in polythene bags of size 15 x 10 cm.
  • Fill the polythene bags with a mixture of FYM and soil in the ratio of 1:3.
  • Dibble one seed per bag on the same day when sowing is taken up in the field.
  • Provide water at regular intervals
  • On the 10th day of sowing, plant seedlings maintained in polythene bags, one in each of the gaps in the field 
  1. Thinning- 
  • After 30 days keep 1 healthy plant per hill
  • Cutting of tops – Cut the tip of main stem on 90 days after sowing to stop vegetative growth and facilitate growth of bolls.

Weed management in cotton

3 Days after transplanting
Herbicide Name
Atrazine 50 WP (200 gram/acre) OR Pendimethalin (600 ml/acre)
Herbicide quantity
200 gram/acre 600 ml/acre
30 Days after transplanting
Herbicide Name
Oxyfluorfen (200 ml/acre) OR Quizalofop Ethyl (400 ml/acre)
Oxyfluorfen OR Quizalofop Ethyl
200 ml/acre 400 ml/acre

Growth regulators for increasing cotton production

  • To avoid flower and boll dropping spray 40ml Naphthalene acetic acid in 200 liter water per acre at flowering stage. 
  • Take second spray at 15-20 days after first spray.

Cotton pest and disease management

Verticillium Wilt

verticillium wilt in cotton
Interveinal yellowing and scorching of leaves Drying of leaf margin and area in between veins
Crop Input Quantity
250.0 gram Per Acre
Copper oxychloride
250.0 gram Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Drench Near root zone in water

Thrips, Aphids, Jassids, Whitefly

Thrips and jassids in cotton farming
Silvery patches on leaves Yellowing of leaves from tip to downwards Curling and crinkling of leaves Development of black sooty mould
Crop Input Quantity
200 ml Per Acre
100.0 gram per acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray


cotton crop diseases - Spodoptera
Larvae feed on the leaves by making small holes
Crop Input Quantity
200 ml Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray

Pink Bollworm

Pink bollworm
Larval feeding on different parts of the flowers Interlocular burrowing and improper opening of bolls
Crop Input Quantity
Pheromone traps
5 units Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Install in the field

Spotted Bollworm

Spotted Bollworm
During early vegetative stage, infested shoots wither, drop and show drying Infested bolls open prematurely and the quality of lint spoiled
Crop Input Quantity
Tricho cards
5 cards Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Install in the field

Bollworm complex

Pink bollworm
During early vegetative stage, infested shoots wither, drop and show drying . Infested bolls open prematurely and the quality of lint spoiled. Scrapping the epidermal layer, leaving the skeleton of veins of leaf
Crop Input Quantity
Bacillus thuringensis
450 gram Per Acre
Indoxacarb + Novaluron
100.0 ml per acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray

American Bollworm (Helicoverpa armigera)

American bollworm in cotton farming
Square and bolls show regular, circular bigger bore holes. Larva seen feeding on the boll by thrusting its head inside. Presence of faecal pellets outside the bore hole. Excessive leaf damage during outbreaks.
Crop Input Quantity
600 ml Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray

Boll Rot

Boll rot of cotton
Brown or black dots covering entire bolls Bolls do not open and fall prematurely
Crop Input Quantity
200 ml Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray

Red Cotton Bug

Red cotton bug in cotton crop
Adults and nymphs suck the sap from leaves, green bolls Affected bolls does not open properly and lint stained with the excreta or body juices
Crop Input Quantity
200 gm Per Acre
Crop Input usage
Mix in water and spray

Cotton harvesting

Harvesting Duration
Harvesting Duration
130 to 180 Days after sowing
Number of Harvests
Harvesting Intervals
15 Days

Yield from cotton farming

Each Harvesting Quantity
3 quintal/acre
Total Harvesting Quantity
10-12 quintal/acre

Post-harvest care for cotton

  • Immediately after picking, dry the cotton in shade. If it is not dried immediately the colour will change which will lower the market value.
  • Do not dry the cotton under direct sun as the fibre strength and luster will be lost.
  • Spread a thin layer of dry sand on the ground and keep the cotton over it.

1 thought on “Cotton Farming: scientific technique for boosting yield

  1. Pingback: Cotton - BharatAgri

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *